My letter to The Straits Times on the above subject gets published today, Tuesday 8th April 2015.
As compared with the slower pace of life in the old days, our lifestyle today is going at break-neck speed that many people find it hard to cope.
Thus, I am not at all surprised that young couples are calling it quits (“Recent marriages not standing the test of time”; yesterday).
Often, when couples are dating, there is room for patience and understanding, but when couples live with one another, after some time, they tend to take each other for granted and get on each other’s nerves.
Then, fault finding becomes the norm when long and draining hours at the workplace see them losing patience with each other.
In any successful relationship, be it at the workplace or in a marriage, practising the 3Ps – patience, perseverance and prayer can achieve excellent results.
It is not always the easiest thing to do, but these virtues have made my 40-year marriage to my late wife successful, despite the huge challenges I faced in caring for her – mental illness and all.
Practising a faith is also a useful tool in keeping the marriage alive, for it teaches us to love unconditionally.
Next, there is emotional support. Israeli researchers found in a study of wives with breast cancer that when their husbands were emotionally distant, the wives suffered more stress. This is why it is vital for couples to provide that much needed emotional support – in good and bad times.
Effective communication is also a must in a marriage, and there are many instances that where marriages also break down, when communication breaks down.
A phone call, rather than an SMS, is still a more effective means of communication.
Raymond Anthony Fernando